The North Carolina Department of Information Technology’s Broadband Infrastructure Office has developed an interactive map to help state residents find free and low-cost internet and mobile service offerings in their area amid the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) pandemic.
“North Carolina is fighting the COVID-19 pandemic with everything we’ve got,” NCDIT Secretary and State Chief Information Officer Tracy Doaks said. “In these uncertain times, more and more of our residents are being asked to work and learn from home, making access to reliable and affordable high-speed internet more critical than ever.”
The online map is updated daily with new offerings, which include free public Wi-Fi access points for remote learning and working. Service providers offering free or affordable options for high-speed internet can submit their offerings at https://it.nc.gov/internet.
This is part of the state’s efforts to help students and schools bridge the digital divide during the state’s response to COVID-19.
On March 30, N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 122 to help schools and local governments access state surplus property, including computers.
Executive Order 124, issued March 31, urged telecommunications, cable and internet service providers to give customers more time to pay outstanding bills and to waive fees and interest for late payments as a result of COVID-19. It also urged providers to lift any data caps, if they had not done so already.